Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Divorce Court

As I write this, I'm in New Orleans in a suit and tie ready to go to a lavish wedding... Ron and Maisy Marrs were seated in the waiting room for courtroom 16E. They had gotten up before the sun rose so they could get through the courthouse security and be ready for their divorce hearing at 8:30am. When I walked in they were already calmly seated together in the crowded waiting room. Maisy was reading the divorce papers. I grabbed the last remaining seat in the room, directly across from them. Then we all waited. Court officers disappeared into the courtroom door beside me.

Finally an officer opened the courtroom door and called in the first couple. They had arrived late and were seated out in the hallway. When they exited the courtroom they looked relieved. I raised my fists in mock celebration and Maisy & Ron laughed. The next couple called in was late as well. I suggested to Ron & Maisy that they should move out into the hallway if they ever wanted to be called into the courtroom.

When they finally were called in, I joined them. The judge asked why I was in her courtroom. Ron blurted out that I was there as a witness. I was blocking in a sketch already but I knew from the preceding couples that the hearing wouldn't last more than 5 minutes. I was thankful I wouldn't have to go on the witness stand. Ron was seated at what is traditionally the defendant's table and Maisy sat at the prosecutor's table. The judge asked Maisy why they were getting divorced. "Irreconcilable differences." Maisy said. I was impressed, a very lawyerly response. "That isn't a reason" the Vulcan judge responded. "Well, we aren't in love anymore." Maisy shot back. "That is a feeling not a reason. The court needs a logical reason for your divorce." I felt bad for Maisy, she hadn't thought to bring along any solid evidence or proof. It suddenly seemed that this divorce might not be granted. Ron stepped in and saved Maisy. "She is going to move to California and I am staying in Orlando." he said. "That makes sense, now, was that so hard?" she said. "Have all your finances been arranged?" "Yes." Ron responded. With that settled, the judge announced that their marriage was dissolved. They still had to do some paperwork, but they were now divorced.


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